Video games have become one of the most engaging mediums of 21st century culture. They not only work as entertainment but also cater for education and development of complex systems and algorithmic dependencies. Far from ideas of interactive narratives, a new breed of games has started to gain force allowing for players to perpetually design and modify vast amounts of data.
Initiatives like Minecraft and Dwarf Fortress start hinting that video games will be able to upgrade our current design vocabulary and modus operandi, placing decision making in a larger algorithmic and data driven environment.
Algorithmic intelligence needs to be coupled with Human intuition to expand the capabilities of the computer beyond the world of engineered performances, accepting that not all architectural values are mathematic. This is what J.C.R. Licklider called Man-Computer Symbiosis.
Video games are and will be in the hands of thousands of players allowing the medium to constantly explore hidden strategies for design. Science has already started tapping into this resource; initiatives like FOLD-IT show us how videogames could present and teach players how to deal with protein folding and allow for scientific discovery.
It is time for design and architecture to connect resources from generative algorithmic design with data visualisation in the form of games allowing for new creative outcomes to emerge from players all over the world.
Further Resources and Readings
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